Recent “Fun Expressions” that Grew Out of Thanksgiving

Dear Reader:

Today we associate beautiful words and terms from America’s first Thanksgiving- words like blessings, bountiful, thanks, feast, and gratitude. There are also some fun expressions that we say or recognize that grew out of this special holiday… some where along the way. *(And even a more serious term few probably have heard about…) Here are some expressions I thought you might enjoy. See how many you have used yourself or heard.

*”To gobble up” – an idiomatic expression that means to eat something completely and rapidly

*cornucopia- A goat’s horn overflowing with fruit, flowers, and grain, signifying prosperity. Also known as a “horn of plenty.” It can be used to mean abundance.

*food coma- A colloquial term for postprandial somnolence which is a state of drowsiness after a meal has been consumed. (The popular turkey myth that it is the amino acid tryptophan in turkey that makes one sleepy after the Thanksgiving meal is just that….a myth. Most likely it is a combination of alcohol and all the carbohydrates (like the mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, mac/cheese and of course dressing who are the real culprits.)

*cold turkey-  an idiomatic expression meaning immediately; without tapering off or cutting down gradually

*turkey trot-A fun run or footrace, usually of the long-distance variety, that is held on or around Thanksgiving Day in the United States.

corny: Originated from the corn crop grown at the first Thanksgiving…the adjective “corny” has a shorter history. It’s been a term of derision only since the 1930s, when something that was “corny” or “cornfed” or “on the cob” was rustic, countrified, old-fashioned, or behind the times – and hence trite or hackneyed. 

*Black Friday: The day or two after Thanksgiving gives people a good opportunity to do some Christmas shopping, since Christmas is generally about a month after Thanksgiving.

However, since so many people had the same idea,  the day after Thanksgiving began to be called Black Friday because it was usually a chaotic, “dark” time to go shopping with so many stores completely full of people.

There is a darker side to this expression, however…

It has to do with the slave trade and another type of financial “discount” –


Etymology, the study of the origin of words and expressions becomes a story in itself… sometimes the term refers to finding the truth hidden under a lighter disguise…case in point: “Black Friday.”

I can only imagine the expressions on the original pilgrim/settlers’ faces that first Thanksgiving if they could have seen into the future…they were simply thankful for life that year…representing only a few who survived that first year of settlement…with the help of  Native-Americans.

Yesterday we had sort of a feast right here at the house…all my children and grandchildren and grand-dogs will be gone this Thanksgiving….but Mandy, Kaitlyn, Eva Cate, Jake and the dogs…Pip and Atticus… arrived bearing a feast of “pink moose’ and “white moose” (ham and turkey) sandwiches from Groucho’s. 

And believed me…we gobbled it all up. My greatest joy was seeing everyone, especially the grandchildren, before they left for the holidays. Safe travels and I love you.

So until tomorrow…the best kind of feast is “feasting my eyes” on my family and being with them whenever possible.

Another “feast for the eyes” was my miniature camellia’s first bloom…I was so excited to see it.

Little Pip was excited to come see his Boo Boo too!

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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6 Responses to Recent “Fun Expressions” that Grew Out of Thanksgiving

  1. Jo Dufford says:

    I am so happy you and your Ya’s had such a wonderful time together Sat. , and then to have your family yesterday was icing on the cake. It doesn’t matter which day it is, but to me, when friends and or family gather it is a Day of Joy and Thanks. Glad you will be with friends/neighbors and Ben on Thursday, the day set aside to remember our blessings, those who survived that first year or two trying to settle this great and vast wilderness and of course, the Native-Americans who shared their knowledge and kindness to help them survive those first months and years. I really can’t imagine people being brave enough to get on a flimsy wooden boat with only the stars to guide them, wind to move them and cross an ocean to come to a wilderness totally unknown to them. We have problems when air flights are canceled, our google maps aren’t working or we have to detour to get somewhere. (Sorry but with the historian in me and my imagination, I can’t help my trying to wrap my mind around what they did.) Happy Thanksgiving to you and all your readers!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Becky Dingle says:

      How beautifully said…you will always be my historical mentor…you were the first name I was given my first year of teaching to observe and to hear your stories Jo…and I learned well…I returned to my classroom filled with stories to share. Thank you for being my teacher…who taught me how to teach!


  2. Pat McTeer Jackson says:

    Wishing you a wonderful Thanksgiving 🦃 and May God bring you lots of great things! Love you and think of you so often😘. Happy Thanksgiving to all your wonderful family 🦃🍁🍽🐾🐾


    • Becky Dingle says:

      Happy Thanksgiving back at you Pat! I miss seeing you when I go to Honey’s ….times change but everyone is so happy where they are with whom they are…that it is obvious the changes were for the best.


  3. bcparkison says:

    I didn’t know about ‘black friday’. No one else does either or I’m sure it would have been scrapped long ago. I have never gone shopping on the day after .. Crowds and I don’t get along .Your Thanksgiving started early and sounds wonderful…even the simple celebration on the day. Do enjoy your week. Sometimes things get crazy at the last minute.


    • Becky Dingle says:

      I am not a “Black Friday” shopper either unless you count my fingers doing the walking on the keyboard…I do like to order the grandchildren’s gifts that day or soon after while the sales are so good….but I am a homebody and don’t like crowds either….I like to be able to hold a gift and think about it…not just snatch it.

      Liked by 1 person

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